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Vocabulary

Top-Ranked Words with Typical Sample Sentences

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appraise   (2 meanings)
2 meanings, 2 uses
1  —1 use as in:
appraised value of
The interest rate is higher if we borrow over 80% of the home's appraised value.
appraised = to place a value on or judge the worth of something
DefinitionGenerally this sense of appraise means:
place a value on or judge the worth of something
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library3 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 4
Web Links
2  —1 use as in:
appraise the situation
He appraised the situation carefully before acting
appraised = evaluate (consider in a comprehensive way)
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library3 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 1
Web Links
apprehensive
1 use
She is apprehensive about her new job.
apprehensive = worried over possible misfortune
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library6 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 100
1st useChapter 6
Web Links
audible
1 use
She spoke in a barely audible whisper.
audible = capable of being heard
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library13 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 3
Web Links
avarice
1 use
We can try both to minimize greed and avarice and to channel them into directions beneficial to society.
avarice = excessive desire for wealth
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 1
Web Links
baptism
3 uses
She was baptized at the same church as her grandmother.
baptized = "spiritually renewed" in a Christian ceremony
DefinitionGenerally baptism means:
a Christian ceremony signifying spiritual cleansing and rebirth

or:

a challenging experience that initiates or purifies
Word Statistics
Book3 uses
Library9 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 3
Web Links
benign
1 use
She predicts benign economic conditions through next year.
benign = mild or favorable (kind)
DefinitionGenerally benign means:
kindly, mild, or harmless
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library3 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 4
Web Links
capital
1 use
She worked hard to raise capital to start their new company.
capital = cash (or more generally, material wealth — especially assets available for use in the production of further assets)
DefinitionGenerally this sense of capital means:
material wealth — especially assets available for use in the production of further assets
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 500
1st useChapter 3
Web Links
consecrate
2 uses
The priest consecrated the chapel.
consecrated = made holy (typically by means of religious rites)
DefinitionGenerally consecrate means:
make holy by means of religious rites
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 3
Web Links
contempt
1 use
1  —1 use as in:
feels contempt towards her
Familiarity breeds contempt.
contempt = lack of respect
DefinitionGenerally this sense of contempt means:
lack of respect — often accompanied by a feeling of intense dislike or disgust
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library11 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 4
Web Links
deliberate
1 use
1  —1 use as in:
a deliberate thinker
She is a deliberate thinker—not the fastest, but always thorough.
deliberate = done with great care — often slowly
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library11 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 2
Web Links
disparage
1 use
She has a reputation for disparaging the efforts of her co-workers.
disparaging = criticizing or making seem less important
DefinitionGenerally disparage means:
to criticize or make seem less important — especially in a disrespectful or contemptuous manner
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st useChapter 3
Web Links
glimmer
1 use
1  —1 use as in:
glimmering lights
The moonlight glimmered on the lake.
glimmered = shined (with a dim or wavering light)
DefinitionGenerally this sense of glimmer means:
a dim, wavering, or reflected light
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library5 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 6
Web Links
grave
1 use
Her smile disappeared as she suddenly realized the gravity of her situation.
gravity = seriousness or importance (weightiness)
DefinitionGenerally this sense of grave means:
serious and/or solemn

The exact meaning of this sense of grave is often subject to its context. For example:
  • "This is a grave problem," or "a situation of the utmost gravity." — important, dangerous, or causing worry
  • "She was in a grave mood upon returning from the funeral." — sad (with a heavy heart)
  • "She looked me in the eye and gravely promised." — sincere and dignified without humor
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library15 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 500
1st useChapter 4
Web Links
incandescence
2 uses
an incandescent bulb
incandescent = shining
DefinitionGenerally incandescence means:
shining (usually emitting light as a result of being heated)
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 2
Web Links
lament
1 use
She lamented the loss.
lamented = expressed grief or regret
DefinitionGenerally lament means:
to express grief or regret
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library9 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st useChapter 5
Web Links
obscure
1 use
1  —1 use as in:
it obscured my view
The stars are obscured by the clouds.
obscured = hidden or made less visible
DefinitionGenerally this sense of obscure means:
to block from view or make less visible or understandable
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library6 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st useChapter 2
Web Links
precipitate
1 use
1  —1 use
verb, as in: action will precipitate
The accident precipitated the union strike for better working conditions.
precipitated = brought about abruptly (suddenly)
DefinitionGenerally this sense of precipitate means:
make something happen abruptly (suddenly)
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library1 use in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st useChapter 3
Web Links
probe
2 uses
There was a congressional probe into the scandal.
probe = investigation
DefinitionGenerally probe means:
to investigate; or an investigation

or:

any of various instrument used for investigation — such as:
  • an instrument to measure electronic voltage
  • a surgical tool used for examination
  • an unmanned spacecraft used for exploration
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library11 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 3
Web Links
recede
4 uses
Her unhappy childhood memories receded as she grew older.
receded = diminished (decreased)
DefinitionGenerally recede means:
to move away or diminish

(see word notes for more detailed definitions based on context)
Word Statistics
Book4 uses
Library11 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 2
Web Links
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